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October 08, 1940 - Image 2

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 1940-10-08

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a xs L.a . +u ii a v ra t N it ri 1 A. 1

N. Y. Philharmonic IsNation's Oldest Symphony Orc


Two Mergers
Form Present
104-Man Group
Only Three Concerts Given
In First Season To 109
Presented Last Year
Oldest orchestra in the United
States and third oldest in the world,
the New York Philharmonic-Sym-
phony, has come a long way" since
its beginning almost a century ago.
The organization as it stands to-
day is the result of two mergers, one
between the New York Philharmonic
and National Symphony in 1921 and
one between that group and the New
York Symphony in 1928.
Although the personnel of the
Philharmonic has only grown from
63 to 104 since its beginning, the
number of concerts given has in-.
creased greatly. In its first season
only three were presented, in the
next sixteen there were only four
and in the following' ten years five.
During the past year, it is interest-
ing to note that 109 concerts were
offered by the orchestra in New York
and 18 were given on tour.
Conductors Listed
The two conductors who did most
to shape the destinies of the Phil-
harmonic were Carl Bergmann and
Theodore Thomas who were fol-
lowed in their work by Seidl, Emil
Paur, Walter Damrosch and then a
series of guest conductors from all
parts of the world.
In 1906 the system of engaging
guest conductors was abandoned and
Wassily Safonoff was selected to
head the orchestra. He was followed
in 1909 by Gustav Mahler who was;
followed in turn by Joseph Stransky.
Wilhelm Mengelberg led the organ-
ization for the next nine years and
introduced Wilhelm Furtwaengler. for
the first time as guest conductor in
The following year saw Arturo Tos-

canini on the podium and the begin-
ning of 11 years of great music under
his baton. With him the Philhar-
monic-Symphony traveled to Europe
in the spring of 1930 and played 23
concerts to sold-out houses in fifteen
different cities.
During the next five years such
noted men of music as Erich Kleiber,
Bruno Walter, Otto Klemperer, Ber-
nadino Molinari, Artur Rodzinski
and Sir Thomas Beecham led the
organization at different times until
it was turned over to its present con-
ductor, the brilliant young English-
man, John Barbirolli.
Born on Dec. 2, 1899 in London,
Barbirolli had the happy artistic
combination of British birth and
Latin background and, as the son of
an Italian father and mother it was
the most natural thing in the world
for him to become a musician. On
his paternal side there had been mu-
sicians as far back as the family
could remember and both his father
and grandfather had taken part in
the first performance of Verdi's
"Otello" as members of the orches-
Early Talent Signs
Little "Tita," as he was called then,
showed early signs of talent and
when he was seven he began the
study of the violin.Although he pro-
gressed rapidly he was handicapped
by a great deal of nervousness and
tended to walk up and down while
practicing. This habit grew very up-
setting to the adult members of the
family until Grandfather Barbirolli
had a bright idea. He decided that
if "Tita" played the cello he would
just thave to sit down and so the
youth became a cellist.
His progress at this instjument
was rapid and after a year he ob-
tained a scholarship at Trinity Col-
lege, London. At the age of 11 he
made his first appearance at the
pueenr's Hall and, although he was
hailed as a great success, he was ob-
sessed with the idea of becoming a
The war came when he was 14 and
before it was over Barbirolli ex-
changed his 'cello for a gun. After
the Armistice he went back to music

Marian Anderson Gains Recognition
As World's GreatestLiving Contralto

Artists Let Their Hair Down

From the Negro quarter of Phila-
delphia to recognition as the great-
est living contralto-that is the his-
tory of Marian Anderson to whom
Arturo Toscanini once cabled "A
voice like yours is heard only once in
a hundred years."
Born in Philadelphia Miss Ander-
son's first public appearance was in
a duet' in the Union Baptist Church.
When she finished high school, after
having sung in her church choir all
during her school years, the people
of her church donated nickels and
dimes into 'a fund for her future.
She was given a scholarship by
Mrs. Mary Saunders Patterson and
a year later earned two years of study
with Agnes Reifsneider by giving a
solo concert under the auspices of the
Philadelphia Choral Society.
Again through the use of funds
raised by well-wishers she was able
to study with'Giuseppe Boghetti who
groomed her for her prize-winning
appearance at Lewisohn Stadium
with the New York Philharmonic
Orchestra which led to an engage-
ment by the Philadelphia Orchestra.
For a year after that she sang little
in public and studied with Frank
La Forge, but in the next four years
and his success increased by leaps
and bounds.
By 1927 he was already conducting
in the series of London Symphony
Orchestra and the Royal Philhar-
monic Society Concerts, taking his
place alongside such great masters
as Weingartner, Beecham and Casals.
Tn the same year he conducted at the
International Opera Season at Co-
vent Garden and later became the
permanent conductor of the Scottish
Orchestra and the Leeds Symphony.
Barbirohi's Debut
Barbirolli's debut with the Phil-
har'monic-Symphony was made in
New York on Nov. 5, 1936 and the
dynamic young conductor became an
immediate success. His audiences
grew with every concert and the af-
fection and admiration extended to
him by his men became more and
more apparent as time went on.
An interesting tale is told of the
time when, after a presentation of
"Don Quixote" by Strauss and the
conductor's last bow, a large number
of his musicians took him into their
collective arms and embraced him in
grateful thanks for the performance
in which they had participated. The
conductor rose to the occasion by
kissing them in turn, his heart
warmed by the enthusiasm of his
men. "No," he commented later, "it
couldn't have happened in Glasgow."
Chorus' Favorite Song f
In the 20 years of its existence,
the Don Cossack Chorus has sung
"The Volga Boat Song" more than
4,000 times in concerts from Singa-
pore to Sioux City.
The "Volga Boat Song" is to a Don
Cossack concert what "Ave Maria"
is to a Marian Anderson recital, since
audiences never fail to request it

she sang at Carnegie Hall and won a
Julius Rosenwald scholarship, besides
fulfilling several engagements in
Not until 1933 did critics begin to
appreciate her glorious voice, when
she began a, three-months circuit of
the continent which extended to
two years, culminated in an appear-
ance at the Mozarteum in Salzburg.
It was on this occasion that Toscan-
ini sent her the message of congrat-
ulation, only the first of a num-
ber of tributes from outstanding
musical experts who have agreed that
Miss Anderson is the greatest living

singer, whose vocal range is unbe-
lievable until heard.
Because of a shipboard accident
she was forced to give her first Town
Hall concert in New York (1935) with
her foot in a cast. As a result of
public demand she appeared in a
concert at Carnegie Hall. Since then
she has sung in concerts in Europe,
the Soviet Union, Africa, and South
America, where the SRO sign was
hung out on every occasion. In 1938
Miss Anderson toured the United
States in the most intensive course
of recitals in concert history for any
singer, including seventy appear-
Howard University made her a
Doctor of Music by awarding her an-
honorary degree and she also re-
ceived the Grand Prix du Chant for

When his collar wilts while he is
playing a Beethoven Concerto. Ru-:
dolf Serkin, pianist, often recalls the
most comfortable concert he ever
gave--dressed in shorts.
One day ,an open air performance
of Shakespeare was being given near
the mountain settlement where Ser-
kin lived as a boy and in return for
a good meal, Serkin was asked to
play between acts. Barefoot and wear-
ing shorts, the boy played to an en-
raptured audience.
Since that time Serkin has been
wishing for the day when it might
be considered proper for musicians
to dress more informally, but has
little hope that it will ever come to
"Baptism in vaseline" is how Ru-
dolf Serkin, pianist, describes his first
public appearance at the age of 12.

His mother thought ie would be
a more appealing figure on the stage
if he were dressed in a Fauntleroy
costume, with his hair arranged in
curls. With the aid of much liquid
vaseline. the local hairdresser man-
aged to achieve the desired affect.
The boy went into the only tan-
trum of his career when he viewed
the curls.. He ran to a water faucet
and before he could be stopped every
vestiage of curl had disappeared.
His debut was a musical success
sans curls, but with hair still greasy
from much vaseline.
* ** *
Auditoriums are too large for pure
singing, in the opinion of Marian
Anderson, contralto.
"But." she added, "there's the other
side of the situation. You do like to
sing to as many people as wish to
hear you, and I don't think that kind
of pleasure is ignoble."

II _ e _. :


the best recorded

voice on the Con-

Last seasoneMiss Anderson toured
more than seventy cities to give nine- J
ty-two concerts between November
and June. In June she sailed for her
first visit to Honolulu after which
she returned to the United States to
make two more appearances.
Eagerly awaited in her program
here will be a group of Negro spirit-
uals which she promised to sing in
her next concert in Ann Arbor. She
was unable to fulfill requests for
them when she sang at Hill Audi-
torium in the 1938 May Festival be-
cause the program was all Brahms,
but assured the audience that she
would include them on her next ap-

The prices of season tickets are $12.00, $10.00, $8.00, and $6.00.
Each seasorn ticket contains a coupon good for $3.00 in exchange
for a season May Festival ticket.
Three center sections, both on the main floor and in the first
balcony, $12.00 each. (These $12.00 tickets are designated "Patrons'
Tickets." and entitle the holder to the same location for the next
May Festival when exchanged in accordance with a May Festival
schedule to be announced.)
Two side sections both on the main floor and in the first
balcony, $10.00 each.
First sixteen rows in the second balcony, $8.00.
The prices of individual concert tickets are: Main floor, $2.50;
first balcony, $2.00; and second balcony, first sixteen rows, $1.50.
If the seats in any division become exhausted remaining orders
will be filled from succeeding divisions, and a corresponding adjust-
ment in finances will be made.
Beginning Monday, October 7, all unsold tickets, both season
and individual, will be offered for sale "over-the-counter" at the
offices of 'The University Musical Society, Burton Memorial Tower.
No responsibility will be assumed for errors made in connection
with orders written illegibly or inaccurately, or in connection with
telephone conversations, or for tickets lost, stolen, burned, or other-
wise destroyed.
CHARLES A. SINK, President
Ann Arbor, Michigan.
Enclosed find remittance of $.... .............. in payment
for............ Choral Union tickets as follows;


One of the outstanding
baritones of this era, and
well loved by Ann Arbor
audiences, will return in
a solo appearance.
'Tuesday, flee. 3
at 8:30


Richard Bonelli

..Tickets: $2.50$2
. . . . tickets at $12 each $... Marian Anderson . .
. . . .tickets at $10 each $... . Rudolf Serkin ....
.... tickets at $8 each $.... Don Cossack Chorus
.taNew York Philharm
. .. . tickets at $6 each $.. . Orchestra.
Total.........$........ Richard Bonelli
PreBoston Symphony
Please Write Name Plainly Orchestra.........;
Name ............ . .........Vladimir Horowitz . .
Minneapolis Sympho
Stret ...............Orchestra......
Cityr..h...... ... ..B apest String Qu
State ...................... Georges Enesco ...
..-.... -........- -.-......

at $...
at $....
at $....
at $...
at $...
at $....
at $....
at $....
at $....





F 1




tan tJ
Ann Arbor will have its first glance in many
years at Vladimir Horowitz, January 15. The
son-in-law of Toscanini, famed in his own right
as one of the leading interpreters of Brahms,
he is making his first tour in this country after
five years of visiting European capitals.





This brilliant Czechoslovak pianist who
has extended his popularity to every part
of the country will be with us again this





Welcome is the return of Georges Enesco,
Rumanian violinist, conductor, and com-









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